Friday, March 28, 2014

Friday Featured Spotlight ~ Kensington & 3 Reviews



Kensington Publishing Corp. is the last remaining independent U.S. publisher of hardcover, trade and mass market paperback books. 2009 marks our 35th year in business. From the time our very first book (Appointment in Dallas by Hugh McDonald), became a bestseller, Kensington has been known as an astute and determined David-vs.-Goliath publisher of titles in the full spectrum of categories, from fiction and romance to health and nonfiction.
Kensington Imprints
Zebra, Brava, Pinnacle, Citadel, Aphrodisia, Dafina, Kteen, eKensington, Rebel Base Books, Lyle Stuart Books, Holloway House, Lyrical Press

*Books source ~ Review copies were provided in exchange for honest reviews. Many thanks to Kensington.
Title ~ Born in Blood
Author ~ Alexandra Ivy
Publisher ~ Zebra
Published ~ 31 December 2013
Genre ~ Paranormal/Romance
Pages ~ 373

My Rating ~ 5 bites out of 5

Sergeant Duncan O’Connor is a Kansa City cop investigating the death of an exotic dancer who is missing her heart. The unusual circumstances of her death mean that a Necromancer is called from Valhalla to help with the investigation. Though Callie Brown prefers to be called a Diviner. If she can get to a body before the spark is gone then she can see the person’s final moments. It’s in those moments that Callie may be able to pinpoint a murderer. However, this case is much different. The dancer’s spark disappears before Callie can get a look at her murderer, but an unusual man remains. A dangerous man. And he shouldn’t be there. Duncan and Callie, along with her Sentinel (bodyguard) Fane, go to Valhalla to talk with the Mave. There’s something very wrong brewing on the horizon and they’re pretty sure the dancer’s death is only the beginning.

After reading the short story Out of Control (The Sentinels, #0.5) in the anthology Predatory I’ve wanted to read more about the Sentinels and Valhalla. This story does not disappoint! While I found Duncan to be a bit overbearing, horn doggish and a tad conceited for my tastes, he’s actually a pretty good guy deep down. Callie is a wonderful heroine, strong and yet vulnerable, but best of all, no pushover when it comes to Duncan. Excellent! There are other great characters who make an appearance, but Fane…oh, my, Fane. He is one hot dude and I can’t wait for his story! *fans self*

The world in this book is so interesting! Even the villain and his back story were interesting. There is a lot of information and world-building going on yet it doesn’t bog the story down one bit. I’m hooked. I love this slightly different take on the paranormal and I’m really looking forward to continuing with this series.


Title ~ Burn For Me
Author ~ Cynthia Eden
Publisher ~ Brava
Published ~ 28 January 2014
Genre ~ Paranormal/Romance
Pages ~ 368

My Rating ~ 5 bites out of 5

Eve Bradley is a reporter undercover trying to expose Dr. Richard Wyatt and his Project Genesis as the true evil that they are when she encounters Subject Thirteen, Cain O’Connor. The world knows about the paranormal creatures that inhabit their world, but the paranormals try to stay out of the limelight. Dr. Wyatt says that his subjects are volunteers and while that may be true for some of them, the majority are captives for his torturous experiments, experiments he conducts in an effort to create the perfect soldier, the perfect weapon, an unstoppable killing machine. And while he doesn’t know exactly what Cain is Wyatt thinks he’s found it in the man who doesn’t die. But Cain has no intention of sticking around much longer. His beast is growing stronger and now Eve is involved in trying to help him get out. However, Wyatt won’t want to lose his prize and with the might of the government backing him, Eve and Cain will have to run fast and far. Who will win in the end?

Cynthia Eden is one of my favorite authors. When I pick up a book by her I’m 99.99% guaranteed I’m going to be entertained. In fact, I can pretty much guarantee that I’ll not want to put the book down. This book lives up to my expectations for an Eden book.

This new series starts off flaming hot. Cain, oh, Cain. *fans self* What a hottie! Literally! Cain is a shifter I’ve not yet seen in a book and he’s very unusual. I loved his battle with his beast, learning the parameters of his existence and his fight to keep yet push away Eve. Eve is no pushover and I like a strong heroine. She has a mysterious past that is revealed slowly throughout the book and I have to say I love the end result. These two were meant to be together and the steamy scenes were beyond sizzling. There are a few characters introduced that I look forward to seeing though I wasn’t quite enamored with Ryder the vampire. I’ll reserve judgment on him until I read Once Bitten, Twice Burned coming out April 29th of this year. 


Title ~ Bite Me
Series ~ Pride, #9
Author ~ Shelly Laurenston
Publisher ~ Brava
Published ~ 25 March 2014
Genre ~ Paranormal/Romance
Pages ~ 384

My Rating ~ 4 bites and a nibble out of 5

Livy Kowalski is a honey badger shifter. There’s not much that can kill her and there’s nothing she fears. Except losing her photography mojo and that’s what seems to be happening to her. And it’s making her cranky. No one wants a honey badger to be cranky, but when her father’s death raises questions and demands revenge, Livy is going to get the job done. Even if Vic Barinov insists on checking in with her, worrying about her and falling in love with her. Love. Livy may have found one more thing that she fears. But Vic, the grizzly bear/Siberian tiger hybrid, has no intention of letting her go, so she best get used to the idea.

Another great addition to the Pride series. Livy is a scary heroine and though she’s physically pretty much indestructible, she’s vulnerable when it comes to Vic. Speaking of Vic, he’s a great character! He identifies mostly with his bear side so he has a lot of patience, he loves honey and he’d do anything to protect Livy though she doesn’t really need protecting. It’s the thought that counts though, right? And his hybrid form? Oh Em Gee! LOL

There are many familiar and favorite characters in this installment and the underlying storyline about who killed Livy’s dad was a good one. While I enjoyed the book very much I felt the romance between Livy and Vic was a bit sparse. Though they are very different from your normal everyday run-of-the-mill two-people-falling-in-love characters, so the offbeat way the relationship proceeded was most likely the best way to go about it. And let’s not forget the humor. How I love the humor in this series! The Pride books are on my Go To List for laughs and shenanigans. I am curious as to how much farther this series will go, but however long that is, I’ll always be ready for another chortle-fest. 

8 comments:

  1. Thanks for sharing - looks like you really enjoy this publisher's novels.

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    1. I do. They have some of my favorite authors. :)

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  2. I added the Pride series to my wishlist after reading a fun review yesterday and I am so adding the Sentinels and Phoenix Fire series too..dang you 3 series to my tbr pile..yikes!

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    1. The Pride series is so much fun! You added all three to your TBR? My work here is done. *walks away whistling* LOL

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  3. I really enjoy the books from this pub. Always so entertaining. I've not read Ivy or Eden (both are on my list) but love Shelly! I had such a good time with Bite Me but yeah would have liked a wee little bit more romance. I heard this was the last in the series! Something about a new series starting up next.

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    1. I'm not sure if it's the last or if she's just taking a break. I did hear she was going to revisit the series The Gathering which had Hunting Season as book 1. I enjoyed it, but wasn't Wowed. We'll see...

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  4. First off - I have to say I really love these covers! But I'm seriously interested in reading Born in Blood - sounds like my kind of story and heroine. And you've peaked my interest about Fane...

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    1. *holds up finger, puts on bib* Ok, we can talk about Fane now. LOL There are a few others that are hot in that book *cough*Wolf*cough*, but Fane...nomnomnom.

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